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Apple Cider Vinegar is the pick of the crop, as Great Taste judges go with their gut


10/09/2018 Download PDF Download Plain Text

Golden Fork from Northern Ireland announced

Celebrating the very best in food and drink, Great Taste, the world’s most coveted food awards, has reached its grand finale for 2018. The Great Taste Golden Fork for the best food or drink from Northern Ireland was presented to Natural Umber from Dungannon for its bold and well-rounded Natural Umber Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, which was a hit with the Great Taste judges. “Smooth and easy to drink with water”, the apple cider vinegar has a “syrupy viscosity, sweet apple character and a sharpness, making a grown up and refreshing soft drink”.

 

Out of a record breaking 12,634 products entered into Great Taste 2018, the Natural Umber Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, which is made by Michael Mackle, whose family has been producing apple products for more than 50 years, was celebrated as the best tasting product in its region at the Great Taste Golden Fork Dinner held on Sunday 2 September at the InterContinental Park Lane Hotel, London, where over 350 guests from the world of fine food gathered to hear the results of many months of rigorous judging.

 

Contact: Natural Umber, Ellen Quinn, 02887 784345 www.naturalumber.com

Attached picture caption: (L to R) John Farrand, Guild of Fine Food, Michael Mackle of Natural Umber and Grainne Moody from Invest Northern Ireland.

 

The Golden Fork from Northern Ireland was sponsored by Invest Northern Ireland and also nominated this year was a Great Taste 3-star winning Lamb Bacon from Hannan Meats in Armagh and a Salted Almond Ice Cream from Antrim-based Mauds Ice Creams.

 

 

A full list of all Golden Fork trophy winners is available from amy@freshlygroundpr.co.uk.

 

Images are available to view in the press room on the Guild of Fine Food website and high resolution images are available from amy@freshlygroundpr.co.uk.

What is Great Taste?  Great Taste, founded in 1994 and organised by the Guild of Fine Food, has judged over 134,000 products in the last 24 years; each one has been blind-tasted by a team of judges who are dedicated to finding the most exquisite tasting food and drink regardless of branding or packaging. The panel of judges this year included; MasterChef 2018 champion, Kenny Tutt, chef and food writer, Elly Curshen, eco chef and food writer, Tom Hunt, author and chef, Zoe Adjonyoh, baker Tom Herbert, author and blogger, Izy Hossack, and baker and recipe writer, Martha Collison, as well as food buyers from Harrods, Selfridges and Sourced Market. These esteemed palates have together tasted and re-judged the 3-star winners to finally agree on the Golden Fork Trophy winners and the Great Taste 2018 Supreme Champion.   Great Taste ratings 3-star: Extraordinarily tasty foods – less than 3% of products are awarded a 3-star each year – don’t leave the shop without buying it! 2-star:  Above and beyond delicious – less than 10% of entries will achieve this rating 1-star: A food that delivers fantastic flavour. Approximately 25% of entries will achieve this rating each year.   Facts and figures about Great Taste 2018
  • Great Taste is widely acknowledged as the most respected food accreditation scheme for artisan and speciality food producers
  • A record breaking 12,634 different products were entered in 2018
  • Over 500 of the most demanding palates, belonging to food critics, chefs, restaurateurs, cooks, producers and a host of food writers, journalists and social media influencers, blind taste each product
  • Judging took place at the following locations:
    • Guild HQ in Gillingham, Dorset, as well several other Dorset venues
    • The Guild of Fine Food’s London home, No. 42 Southwark Street, SE1
  • 192 awarded 3-star
  • 1,207 awarded 2-star
  • 3,254 awarded 1-star
  What are Great Taste judges looking for? They’re looking for great texture and appearance. They judge the quality of ingredients and how well the maker has put the food or drink together. But above all, they are looking for truly great taste.   How do they work? Each team of four judges blind-tastes around 25 products per session, discussing each product as a coordinating food writer transcribes their comments directly onto the Great Taste website which producers access after judging is completed. Over the years, numerous food businesses, start-ups and well-established producers have been advised how to modify their foods and have subsequently gone on to achieve Great Taste stars. Food or drink that is deemed worthy of Great Taste stars is also tasted by a team of arbitrators, who taste, confer and agree on the final award given. If judges feel that a product needs some adjustment, and is therefore not likely to receive an award, the food or drink gets a second chance on a referral table, where another team blind-tastes and deliberates. For a Great Taste 3-star award, the vast majority in the room - which can be as many as 30-40 experts - must agree that the food or drink delivers that indescribable ‘wow’ factor.   What do the stars mean for producers? Recognised as a reliable stamp of excellence among consumers, retailers and major food buyers alike, Great Taste success can be the gateway to exciting opportunities for food and drink producers. As well as seeing an uplift in sales and revenue, award-winning producers also get to enjoy raised awareness by appearing in the Great Taste book, a unique directory used by many food retailers, supplying samples for high profile events and exhibiting as part of Great Taste Markets at events including RHS Hampton Court Flower Show, CarFest and Countryfile Live. Receiving a 3-, 2- or 1-star rating for products really puts producers on the map, while opening doors to investment and export opportunities.   What should consumers look for? The logo. The Great Taste symbol is their guarantee a product has been through a rigorous and independent judging process. It’s not about smart packaging or clever marketing – it’s all about taste.   3 September 2018

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